• 48°

Isaac’s 21 leads FSU past Wolfpack

By Joe Reedy

Associated Press

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida State’s Jonathan Isaac has been overshadowed a bit when it comes to discussing who the top freshman is in the Atlantic Coast Conference. On Wednesday night he took his place in the spotlight.

Isaac led the 14th-ranked Seminoles with 21 points as they defeated North Carolina State 95-71.

The 6-foot-10 forward, who had only two points in last Sunday’s 48-point win over Clemson, scored the first seven points as FSU (21-4, 9-3) led throughout. It is his third game of 20 points or more this season.

“This game I feel like I came out a little more aggressive and my teammates found me early. It makes the game a lot easier and gets the nerves out of the way,” Isaac said.

Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton added that Isaac is more of a student of the game, which sometimes overshadows his ability to score.

“Tonight he got into a nice flow there early. He was extremely confident and got us off to a good start,” Hamilton said.

N.C. State’s Dennis Smith Jr., who is considered the favorite for Freshman of the Year, matched a season-low with eight points and was held scoreless in the first half for the first time this season.

“They had a great scheme to get the ball out of my hand early. That threw off the flow of our offense,” Smith said. “We still have to make plays when they double me. It’s 4-on-3 when the ball is out of my hands.”

N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried said he was pleased with the Wolfpack’s (14-11, 3-9) shot selection — they were 28 of 60 from the field — but thought the difference in the game was inside. The Seminoles had a 49-25 edge in rebounds, including 21 on the offensive end, and outscored the Wolfpack 48-28 in the paint. Ten of Florida State’s two-point baskets were either a dunk or tip-in.

“Today they just whipped us on the glass,” Gottfried said. “They’ve got length and depth, especially at the perimeter.”

Dwayne Bacon added 19 points and Michael Ojo had 11 for FSU, which has won 18 straight at home and at one point led by as many as 26 points in the second half.

Terry Henderson led the Wolfpack with 17 points while Maverick Rowan and Abdul-Malik Abu added 16 apiece.

BIG PICTURE

N.C. State: With losses in five of their last six games, the Wolfpack are in danger of playing on the first day of the conference tournament for the second straight season.

Florida State: After road losses to Georgia Tech and Syracuse two weeks ago, FSU has won its last three games by an average margin of 30 points. However, four of their last six games are on the road.

STREAKING

Bacon has scored in double figures in 34 straight games, which is the longest in program history since Alton Lee Gipson in 1984-85. It is also the longest current streak in the ACC.

SHORT BENCH

N.C.State was missing senior center BeeJay Anya, who did not make the trip due to a “coach’s decision.” Sophomore forward Shaun Kirk also did not play due to the school’s concussion protocol.

HE SAID IT

“I wanted to take a challenge tonight. He’s one of the top scorers in our league. We had a solid defensive effort tonight,” Florida State’s Xavier Rathan-Mayes said of guarding Smith, who came into the game fifth in the conference in scoring and averaging 19.2 points per game.

UP NEXT

N.C. State: The Wolfpack are at Wake Forest on Saturday. The Demon Deacons won the first meeting 93-88 on Jan. 21.

Florida State: The Seminoles travel to Notre Dame on Saturday. FSU beat the Fighting Irish 83-80 on Jan. 18.

___

More AP college basketball at http://collegebasketball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

___

Follow Joe Reedy on Twitter at www.twitter.com/joereedy

Comments

Crime

Thomasville officer hospitalized after chase that started in Rowan County

Local

Board of elections discusses upgrading voting machines, making precinct changes

News

Lawmakers finalize how state will spend COVID-19 funds

Local

Salisbury Station one of several ‘hot spots’ included in NCDOT rail safety study

Education

Essie Mae Kiser Foxx appeal denied, school considering options

News

Iredell County votes to move Confederate memorial to cemetery

Nation/World

Lara Trump may have eyes on running for a Senate seat

Local

Rowan among counties in Biden’s disaster declaration from November floods

Local

PETA plans protest at Salisbury Police Department on Friday

Education

Essie Mae Kiser Foxx appeal denied, charter revoked

Coronavirus

29 new positives, no new COVID-19 deaths reported

Crime

Blotter: Woman charged with drug crimes

News

Nesting no more: Eagles appear to have moved on from Duke’s Buck Station

Business

The Smoke Pit leaving downtown Salisbury for standalone building on Faith Road

Education

Shoutouts

High School

High school football: Hornets’ Gaither set the tone against West

Local

Salisbury to show off new fire station

Education

Livingstone College to host virtual Big Read events this month

Local

City makes some appointments to local boards, holds off on others to seek women, appointees of color

Education

Education briefs: RCCC instructor honored by Occupational Therapy Association

Local

Second quarter financial update shows promising outlook for city’s budget

Columnists

Genia Woods: Let’s talk about good news in Salisbury

Local

City attorney will gather more information for Salisbury nondiscrimination ordinance

Education

North Hills planning to hold May fundraiser in person